On-Going Instruction in the Principles of Christianity
THE CREDO OF THE PEOPLE OF GOD OF POPE ST. PAUL VI
(The SOLEMN PROFESSION OF FAITH - 19 thru 22)
- WE BELIEVE IN ONE, HOLY, CATHOLIC, AND APOSTOLIC CHURCH, BUILT BY JESUS CHRIST ON THE ROCK WHICH IS PETER. She is the Mystical Body of Christ; at the same time a visible society instituted with hierarchical organs, and a spiritual community; the Church on earth, the Pilgrim People of God here below, and the Church filled with heavenly blessings; the germ and the first fruits of the Kingdom of God, through which the work and the sufferings of Redemption are continued throughout human history, and which looks for its perfect accomplishment beyond time in glory. In the course of time, the Lord Jesus forms His Church by means of the Sacraments emanating from His plenitude. By these she makes her members participants in the mystery of the Death and Resurrection of Christ, in the grace of the Holy Spirit who gives her life and movement. She is therefore holy, though she has sinners in her bosom, because she herself has no other life but that of grace: it is by living by her life that her members are sanctified; it is by removing themselves from her life that they fall into sins and disorders that prevent the radiation of her sanctity. This is why she suffers and does penance for these offenses, of which she has the power to heal her children through the blood of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
- HEIRESS OF THE DIVINE PROMISES AND DAUGHTER OF ABRAHAM according to the Spirit, through that Israel whose Scriptures she lovingly guards, and whose patriarchs and prophets she venerates; founded upon the Apostles and handing on from century to century their ever-living word and their powers as pastors in the successor of Peter and the bishops in communion with him; perpetually assisted by the Holy Spirit, she has always the charge of guarding, teaching, explaining and spreading the truth which God revealed in a then veiled manner by the Prophets, and fully by the Lord Jesus. We believe all that is contained in the Word of God written or handed down, and that the Church proposes for belief as divinely revealed, whether by a solemn judgment or by the ordinary and universal magisterium. We believe in the infallibility enjoyed by the successor of Peter when he teaches ex cathedra as pastor and teacher of all the faithful, and which is assured also to the episcopal body when it exercises with him the supreme magisterium.
- WE BELIEVE THAT THE CHURCH FOUNDED BY JESUS CHRIST AND FOR WHICH HE PRAYED IS INDEFECTIBLY ONE IN FAITH, WORSHIP AND THE BOND OF HIERARCHICAL COMMUNION. In the bosom of the Church, the rich variety of the liturgical rites and the legitimate diversity of theological and spiritual heritages and special disciplines, far from injuring her unity, make it more manifest.
- RECOGNIZING ALSO THE EXISTENCE, OUTSIDE THE ORGANISM OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST, OF NUMEROUS ELEMENTS OF TRUTH AND SANCTIFICATION which belong to her as her own and tend to Catholic unity, and believing in the action of the Holy Spirit who stirs up in the heart of the disciples of Christ love of this unity, we entertain the hope that Christians who are not yet in the full communion of the one only Church will one day be reunited in one flock with one only Shepherd.
(Pope Saint Paul VI, reigned 1964-1978)
Raised to the Altars October 14th, 2018